I’ve been spending the last couple of weeks wandering around Songdo in an effort to get my daily step count up (More about that later) and following other people’s recommendations have found a couple of incredibly useful places that I thought I would share with you all here: A tailor (for repairs) and a fabulous stationery shop:
Now Songdo is replete with tailors – mostly for men’s suits and shirts, but if you are female and have a shirt that they can copy, I hear this works pretty well – but what I have needed is someone to do minor repairs. Over the last year or so, with the invaluable support of YouTube, I have been teaching myself how to do some of these repairs myself but it’s never the neatest job – as we know, patience is not my strong point. I also had a dress that needed re-hemming, but not urgently enough for me to post it home to mum. Well about a week ago, a couple of my friends told me of this random tiny little store in a part of town that I would never really wander to where there sits a genius with a sewing machine. One even said that when her friends come visit from out-of-town, they bring all the repair and sewing work they need done as they no longer trust anyone else with their clothes. Well, I’m sold! Before I took along the dress, I thought I would wait and try something else. Raj had a tear in the leg of his linen trousers (now relegated to lounge-wear only) which was the perfect start. Off I wander with the vague directions: Across the road from Relish, up the street from the GS25 Supermarket (ed. GS25 is a convenience store, but the supermarket has a larger selection of products, including a mini-Daiso – wait, what, I haven’t told you about Daiso yet? Ok, that’s getting a whole post to itself soon. Daiso might just be my favourite thing about South Korea) into a building, next to a book store and by the pink sign. And I found it! For only 4,000 won, the trousers have been brought back into the outdoor clothes rotation – she is amazing. Next time, I went I took my dress to be hemmed and a few days later, I have a new outfit for all of 8,000 won. Seriously guys, all your mending needs will be covered here. But directions OK.
The shop is based on Haedoji-Ro. If you walk up Haedoji-ro towards Haedoji Park (on the opposite side of the road from the Korean Coast Guard and Relish). You’ll pass the GS25 Supermarket (hello red onions!) and soon you’ll come up to an NH Bank. Take a right down the little street and when you see an ‘H’ above the door, in you go. Walk all the way to the end (there is actually a HUGE pink sign outside the tailor) and you’ll see a lovely lady with her sewing machine and lots of clothes. It really couldn’t be easier!
To make sure you are turning into the right little street, across the road you will see this building:
It was a little weird to take pictures of the tailor’s shop but I’ll try for one of those next time!
EDIT: if you are buying new clothes that need taking in/up, check with the shop that you bought it in first. Uniqlo, for example, will hem trousers for free, usually while you wait, depending on how busy they are!
Now, for all your stationery needs, you need to head to The Life. It took me a few attempts to find it, but I can confidently say it is on Sinsong-ro – just around the corner from Songdo Mart and up the street from Burger Z. If you’ve ever taken 6724 bus from Seoul back to Songdo, you’ve certainly passed it. It’s on the second floor (Korean second floor, so the first floor in other countries) so, as ever in Korea, look up as you wander.
This store has everything that you need for arts and crafts-ing. Paints, paper, card, aerosols, varnish, glue polystyrene balls, brushes and so on. There is also a huge selection of ribbon and gift wrap, board games (in Korean) batteries, cleaning products and school supplies. Also, if anyone is playing cricket, huge bottles of linseed oil to keep your bat in check. Now I can’t share everything I bought because I’m in the midst of planning a baby shower and don’t want the decoration ideas to get out but I tell you, definitely worth a half an hour wander to pick up all the things that you didn’t know you wanted (sorry Raj!).